by Benson Eluma
.
1.
Sister Mustard died someplace
Mount Ebola, I think, in Africa.
They planted a mine on the headstone
For a curious little boy to play with.
Kaboom! and his lost limbs made
A weeklong presence on international news.
Sister Mustard turned
And smiled in her death…
.
2.
The ants worked hard in the sun
Following the ancient wisdom.
But this year the rains did not fall; they waxed
Lyrical, Hard Rock melting sand-home and barn.
Afterwards, camera crews rushed
To scoop water; their
Precision instruments detailing
The wreckage to the last microscopic fractal…
.
3.
The poetaster wrote his dying song
After so many years of ruing the ignominy
Of his verse, the evil recalcitrance of his stylus.
He sent it out, a warning to others trying the impossible.
But the critics, hard up for new conundrums,
Overturned every stone;
They scoured every cave
To lay laurels at his unmarked grave…
.
4.
And Daodu, born on the first day
In the Year of Jubilee, a complete set of teeth
Fortifying his infant gums,
Died a plenipotentiary with 300 monuments.
And the worms went to work on the annals.
And floods ravaged the city year after year.
And finally a generation arose in whose memory
Daodu’s name, undecipherable, was a dead talisman…
.
Used by permission.

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